MANILA – It looks like the Philippine Azkals will encounter rough sailing against Turkmenistan in the 2014 Challenge Cup qualifiers.
The Turkmenistan Green Men wiped out the Cambodian Angkor Warriors, 7-0, in the opening game of the Cup's qualifying round at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium on Friday.
Using an efficient scoring game, the Tukmens ran over the hapless Cambodians all throughout the game.
Amanow Arslanmyrat scored an early goal for Turkmenistan in the 8th minute and this was followed by successive strikes by Nazar Bayramov in the 24th and the 37th minute.
The Angkor Warriors could not handle the Green Men’s offensive pressure, which led to an own goal in the 42nd minute.
With their confidence sky-high, the Turkmens continued the attack and scored three more goals.
Berdy Samyradow slid in their fifth in the 74th minute.
This was followed by Guvanch Abylov’s goal in the 82nd minute and another one by Gurbangeldi Batyrov in the 88th.
With the win, the Turkmens are now at the top of standings with six points.
This includes the first three points each team received following the withdrawal of Brunei from the tournament.
The Philippine Azkals will take on Cambodia on Sunday before facing the Turkmens in their much-awaited rematch since the 2012 Challenge Cup semis.
Turkmenistan scored a 2-1 victory against the Azkals in that semis clash and gained the right to face eventual 2012 champion North Korea.